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This paper presents the effect of binder type, binder proportion and water-to-cement ratio on the short- and long-term unconfined compressive strength (UCS) of cemented paste backfill (CPB). Ordinary Portland cement (OPC), Portland composite cement (PCC) and sulphate resistant cement (SRC) were used as the binders to prepare CPB samples from sulphide-rich tailings. The experimental results showed that neither OPC nor PCC were effective, since the loss of stability of CPB samples was observed after a curing period of 56 days. However, sulphate-resistant-based cements (SRC and a mix of OPC and SRC) produced good long-term strengths and stability. CPB samples at 7 wt.% binder dosage produced 1.5 to 1.9 fold higher UCS values than those at 5 wt.% binder dosage on all curing days. In addition, no strength loss was found to occur at 7 wt.% binder dosage in contrast to that noted at 5 wt.%. The UCS of CPB samples prepared from PCC at 5wt.% binder dosage were observed to increase with decreasing water-to-cement ratio. This study has revealed that binder type, binder proportion and water-to-cement ratio are of practical importance for the strength of CPB material in the short- and long-term.
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